Evan, I hear you. It is so very obvious. And here, for what it’s worth, is the problem: dishonesty is so very, very rampant, so sadly commonplace, that when I post real, up-to-date photos of myself, men assume they’re old. Therein lies the heartbreak. You can use any of this you like. For example, as a 66 yo bodybuilder and adventure traveler I am in primo shape. While this is largely meaningless, I really do look about fifteen years younger (who cares right? some do), but it’s how I look. I work extremely hard at it. So I post photos of myself doing all the things I love. All are legit. Especially the bodybuilding photos. So when and if I make a date, and this happened to me just two weeks ago, the guy shows up (having claimed that he was “athletic and fit” )with AT LEAST thirty pounds of slop straining his belt. I’m in my workout gear, flat belly, serious biceps. He looked at me in shock, and said, “YOU LOOK LIKE YOUR PICTURES,” as though that were some kind of major miracle. You’re damned right I do. And you don’t. End of story. Have a nice day. I have met one man who looked like his photos. Sadly, he wasn’t a nice man, but that’s another issue entirely. The fundamental dishonesty that informs so much of online dating is so rampant, so widespread that it’s taught many of us to largely disregard what people post. This is especially true, in my experience, for men of a Certain Age. They post photos of themselves as 20 year old Army recruits. Really? Honestly? We’re not dating a distant idea. We are dating here and goddamned NOW. How you wish to handle this, Evan, is up to you. But we cannot, cannot, cannot expect anyone to take us seriously if we are unwilling to take ourselves seriously. We all age, we all change, we all morph. Deal with it. Or, damn it all anyway, do what you can about it. That means get moving, eat better, get a life, get busy, get a hobby. But Do. Not. Lie.

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Horizon Huntress, prize-winning author, adventure traveler, boundary-pusher, wilder, veteran, aging vibrantly. I own my sh*t. Let’s play!

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